Eliza Hamilton: The Extraordinary Life and Times of the Wife of Alexander Hamilton

Eliza Hamilton: The Extraordinary Life and Times of the Wife of Alexander Hamilton

From the New York Times bestselling author of Irena’s Children comes a comprehensive and riveting biography of the extraordinary life and times of Eliza Hamilton, the wife of founding father Alexander Hamilton, and a powerful, unsung hero in America’s early days. Fans fell in love with Eliza Hamilton—Alexander Hamilton’s devoted wife—in Lin-Manuel Miranda’s phenomenal musi...

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Title:Eliza Hamilton: The Extraordinary Life and Times of the Wife of Alexander Hamilton
Author:Tilar J. Mazzeo
Rating:

Eliza Hamilton: The Extraordinary Life and Times of the Wife of Alexander Hamilton Reviews

  • Stacy

    Unputdownable! I had so much fun reading this biography. The author is one of those writers who makes everything so fascinating you're constantly going to back and forth to Google to learn even more about some cool thing you just read in the book. I have to look up what else Tilar Mazzeo has written.

  • Melissa

    I've been so curious about Eliza's story and this is an amazing biography of her.

  • Katelyn

    I loved this super readable biography of Eliza Hamilton. For anyone who can't get enough of the Hamilton craze, or just wants to learn more about a strong woman coming of age with America, this is a great read.

    My one caveat is that it's told in such a wonderfully readable style (it's not dry at all), that I was a little uncomfortable with the author authoritatively saying what Eliza's reactions to events, etc were. I wish there was more source material from Eliza herself. However, there's just s

    I loved this super readable biography of Eliza Hamilton. For anyone who can't get enough of the Hamilton craze, or just wants to learn more about a strong woman coming of age with America, this is a great read.

    My one caveat is that it's told in such a wonderfully readable style (it's not dry at all), that I was a little uncomfortable with the author authoritatively saying what Eliza's reactions to events, etc were. I wish there was more source material from Eliza herself. However, there's just so much you can know about someone and how they felt. I'm glad that I was able to read a biography about Eliza Hamilton. I'd love more on the Schuyler sisters.

  • Margaret Sankey

    Mazzeo explores the life and context of Eliza Hamilton--her family network of wealthy Dutch patroons, the American Revolution, her sketchy in-laws (Angelica and Cornelia picked creeps with whom to elope), the financial boom of the 1790s, Hamilton's status as an outsider favorite of the Washingtons and user of the Schuyler network, the yellow fever epidemic in Philadelphia and the four decades of widowhood and philanthropy. This is well-researched, but popularly formatted with references in the b

    Mazzeo explores the life and context of Eliza Hamilton--her family network of wealthy Dutch patroons, the American Revolution, her sketchy in-laws (Angelica and Cornelia picked creeps with whom to elope), the financial boom of the 1790s, Hamilton's status as an outsider favorite of the Washingtons and user of the Schuyler network, the yellow fever epidemic in Philadelphia and the four decades of widowhood and philanthropy. This is well-researched, but popularly formatted with references in the back, which makes weighing the author's interpretation of things difficult, especially an assertion that the Maria Reynolds affair was cover for financial scandal, not a sexual infidelity.

  • Joelle

    This was an intriguing glimpse into the lives of Eliza Hamilton and her Revolutionary peers. I’m glad that while this is a biography of Eliza there was a plethora of information about the people who influenced her life and times. I’ve seen plenty about Eliza’s relationship with her husband and sisters, but this book gave me a much more complete picture of her life. I was fascinated by the historic figures she interacted with as well as her unique part of establishing the United States of America

    This was an intriguing glimpse into the lives of Eliza Hamilton and her Revolutionary peers. I’m glad that while this is a biography of Eliza there was a plethora of information about the people who influenced her life and times. I’ve seen plenty about Eliza’s relationship with her husband and sisters, but this book gave me a much more complete picture of her life. I was fascinated by the historic figures she interacted with as well as her unique part of establishing the United States of America. I highly recommend this biography to American history enthusiasts as well as fans of Hamilton.

    *I received an advanced copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.

  • Kathleen

    The author used research which she then fleshed out into the story of Eliza Hamilton's life. The beginning of the book was about her childhood and then about a third of the way through the book, the scandals started. If you like books about the ways of the world in those days with the balls and the limited opportunities for women, you will enjoy this book. If you liked the musical, then you may be interested in this.

    I'm not a fan of reading most historical tales, whether fiction or non or of rea

    The author used research which she then fleshed out into the story of Eliza Hamilton's life. The beginning of the book was about her childhood and then about a third of the way through the book, the scandals started. If you like books about the ways of the world in those days with the balls and the limited opportunities for women, you will enjoy this book. If you liked the musical, then you may be interested in this.

    I'm not a fan of reading most historical tales, whether fiction or non or of reading stories set in this era. It was good for what it was and my rating is based on my interests.

    (I received this in a goodreads giveaway.)

  • Michael Denton

    It’s a quick read but you quickly tell that the author makes up for the lack of source material on Eliza by filling in the blanks herself. While it’s nice to have the perspective of Eliza and what was going on at home for Alexander there are many times where the read has to ask “how would this author know that?” This would be fine except for her main theory on the Reynolds Pamphlet. This argument is poorly made and relies solely on interpreting Eliza’s behavior instead of attempting to make an a

    It’s a quick read but you quickly tell that the author makes up for the lack of source material on Eliza by filling in the blanks herself. While it’s nice to have the perspective of Eliza and what was going on at home for Alexander there are many times where the read has to ask “how would this author know that?” This would be fine except for her main theory on the Reynolds Pamphlet. This argument is poorly made and relies solely on interpreting Eliza’s behavior instead of attempting to make an argument based on the texts. It’s then treated as undisputed fact for the rest of the book, to great annoyance.

  • Holly

    This is a hard one to rate, simply because I almost feel like it should be under historical fiction rather than Biography. I know there are not a lot of source materials from Eliza herself, but I did not like how the author would infer or state things about Eliza that she actually has no way of knowing. For example, saying that Eliza blushed. Really? How did she know that? I think the author took a lot of leeway. Also, the theory the author raises around the Maria Reynolds scandal is interesting

    This is a hard one to rate, simply because I almost feel like it should be under historical fiction rather than Biography. I know there are not a lot of source materials from Eliza herself, but I did not like how the author would infer or state things about Eliza that she actually has no way of knowing. For example, saying that Eliza blushed. Really? How did she know that? I think the author took a lot of leeway. Also, the theory the author raises around the Maria Reynolds scandal is interesting and she does have some good arguments for why it could have happened the way she states. But I feel like it was a little too one-sided and maybe the author ignored or did not explore other historical documents that back up the traditional story. She was too focused on making her point to address other historical facts that may not have validated her theory. Also, Eliza lived for 50 years after the death of Alexander. But the author does not spend much time on those 50 years. It is almost as if Eliza's life only mattered while she was married to Alexander.

  • Heather

    Reading this was an absolute waste of time & I do not understand how the term "biography" can be attached to this. Biographical fiction? Yes. But this is not a biography.

    The way the author wrote this was incredibly frustrating, starting with the first sentence on the first page: "Eliza blushed. It was a beautiful letter." After reading the first page, I actually checked to make sure this was a biography and not another fictional account of her life. The rest of the book continued this way,

    Reading this was an absolute waste of time & I do not understand how the term "biography" can be attached to this. Biographical fiction? Yes. But this is not a biography.

    The way the author wrote this was incredibly frustrating, starting with the first sentence on the first page: "Eliza blushed. It was a beautiful letter." After reading the first page, I actually checked to make sure this was a biography and not another fictional account of her life. The rest of the book continued this way, with the author filling in holes with her own ideas of what Eliza would have said or done in a situation, based on what little we know of her. There aren't a lot of primary source documents authored by Eliza, so most of what the author relies on are other peoples REACTIONS to her letters & actions. Yes, you can make inferences from that, but the fact is that since we don't have letters or diaries from Eliza for the bulk of her life, most of what is written here is sappy conjecture.

    The theory about the Maria Reynolds scandal was also a bit over the top.

    Is that theory true? Maybe. But in making this theory look better, she deliberately left out information about Maria Reynolds that other historians have included in their telling of these events: like the affidavit from the son of Maria's first land lady in Philadelphia, attesting to her wild mood swings & that she would "insinuate herself on certain high & influential characters". In his statement he also stated that the Reynolds' slept in separate beds when they moved to new lodgings, and that "gentlemen left letters in her entryway" and "at night she would fly off as supposed to answer their contents". She also fails to mention that Maria Reynolds went on to marry Jacob Clingman (before her divorce was finalized), who was a friend of James Reynolds, and was arrested with him. But none of this is ever mentioned. She gives the Hamilton Musical version of the affair, and then spends a good chunk of the book giving validation to her theory.

    But my biggest issue with this book is the amount of time that her post Hamilton life receives: 53 pages. She lived without him for almost 50 years. This section of her life deserves more than a pathetic 50 pages.

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